6 May 2012

Blaze at Thai chemical factory kills 12

10:12 pm on 6 May 2012

A large blaze at a chemical factory in eastern Thailand has killed 12 people, injured more than 100 and released toxic smoke into the air.

Hundreds of residents had to be evacuated after the fire, which was caused by an explosion at the factory in Rayong province, sent a plume of black acrid smoke into the sky.

Firefighters quelled the blaze but health officials continued to monitor air quality.

A health ministry statement said 12 people had died in the explosion and ensuing fire, while 129 were injured, mainly suffering burns.

The majority of the victims are believed to be factory workers.